All in the Family featured the curmudgeonly Archie Bunker. Archie was television’s most famous grouch, blunt, blustering, straightforward and untouched by the PC crowd. He was the archetype of the conservative male. Michael desprately tried to reeducate him, but he persisted in his breviloquence.

Looking back at the last 40 years, we realize: ARCHIE WAS RIGHT!


Bad Joke Wednesday

Some monks were running low on funds, but didn't want to close up their monastery. After much consideration, they decided to start selling the flowers they grew. Soon after opening up shop, business boomed, much to their delight. They had plenty of cash now for burlap and oatmeal and everything else good monks need.

Unfortunately, the town already HAD a flower shop. The disgruntled owner of the rival store tried everything -- having discount sales, spreading slander about the monks, and even poisoning the monks' flower beds. Unfortunately, they'd been blessed and nothing could stop their little business.

Finally, the rival shop owner sought out a much-rumored-of man: Hugh. No one knew his last name, just that he got the job done, no questions asked. After the appropriate amount of money had changed hands, Hugh went over to the friars' place, thoroughly beat them silly, and then destroyed their flower beds. The next day, the monks promptly boarded up the windows and closed shop permanently, thus proving that Hugh, and only Hugh, can prevent florist friars.


This Weekend

There are times when I really want to kick myself for forgetting my digital camera.

Saturday I took a little turkey hunting trip. Over all not a bad day, the weather was reasonably nice. The snow was off most of the southern exposures and only about 4in or so deep on the north slopes. The drifts were deeper. I saw a few birds but I didn't get a shot at a gobbler. I did see another kind of Tom .

I was working my way along a southern ridge when I saw brown movement up ahead and slightly to my right. The birch trees and the snow covered ground made the movement easy to detect. My first thought was deer. The animal had slipped behind a stand of pines about 80 yards from me, and I lost sight of it for a second. Then it came out into the open and sat down on its hind haunches behind a stand of birch trees. Deer don't sit on their haunches, ever, at least I've never seen them do it.

I grabbed for my field glasses even though I knew what was staring back at me. His head was huge, the size of a basketball. He was turned so I could see his face and massive chest. He didn't blink, growl or move. He sat still sniffing the air and looking me over. 80 yards is almost a football field in length, when the animal in front of you can go from 0 to 45mph in less than a second, 80 yards is little more than handshake distance. Still, I didn't touch my rifle. I had loaded it with 55 grain Sierra fmj's at 3,200 fps, perfect for popping a turk, of no value for what I now saw. The HP's were in my drag bag, behind the seat of my locked truck, and not even in a magazine. I knew what I would do when he stood. If he came towards me, I would draw my side arm and wait for the pounce. Then I would tuck tight and shoot center of mass. I wasn't going to move first.

Utill then I would watch. I saw his breath in the frosty morning air. I watched him and he watched me back. He stood and streched out just like a kitten. His tail was as long as his body and thicker than my forearm. He twitched it back and forth. As he stood and turned away from me I could see his belly sag and drag in the snow. He had recently eaten, and was positivly gorged. He weighed more than a fat man, at least 265 lbs. I found his tracks in the snow. My hand could fit inside them without touching the sides. I don't know how to put into words how large yet gracefully athletic this beast was.

I have been closer to wild cats and worked with wildlife bioligists tracking and studying them. This was by far the largest one I have ever encountered in the wild. I'm sure it is the largest in Wyoming. Here is a recent Wyoming lion The one I saw Sat would have dwarfed it. In case your having a hard time wrapping you head around what I am claiming, I'm saying the cat I saw would beat, at least in weight, the current worlds record .

I wish I had taken my camera. I figured that if I got a turkey and it was worth taking a picture of, I could always do it at home. In case your wondering, no there weren't any turkeys in that hollow.

I just got off the phone with Berger. They have added a second shift and should be meeting demand in about 6 weeks.



It is that time of year again. Who is up for rafting?

"Political Correctness"

There is an annual contest at Texas A&M University calling for the most appropriate definition of a contemporary term:

This year's term was "Political Correctness."

The winner wrote:
"Political correctness is a doctrine, fostered by a delusional, illogical minority, and rabidly promoted by an unscrupulous mainstream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a turd by the clean end.."


Accurate Reloading

I have wanted to achieve certain milestones in my shooting. At first I wanted to be able to shoot a lot. The best way to afford this was reloading. I bought my Rock Chucker kit and some powder, primers and bullets and I was in business. As time went on, I wanted to shoot a lot and be very accurate and that is where the adventure begins.

"Accuracy" means different things to different people. For most guys I think it starts as the need to hit the beer can with the 22 when you're 10. Then it becomes kill the deer at 100 yards. For me it has become a goal of sub moa performance every time I pull the trigger. Preferably better sub moa performace than the other guy at the match.

Repeatable accuracy is the art of getting everything the same. If your componets are the same and are assembled at the same high quality level, you stand a much better chance of your bullets going to the same point of impact each time. Assuming of course that your conditions remain constant and you don't screw the pooch when you pull the trigger.

These are the parts that go into making the round. The brass, primer, powder, and bullet should always be from the same production lot as all the other rounds in your run. That means that they were made at the same time, from the same materials and on the same equipment as all the other componets in that production run. Even then there can be varriance in the size, shape, weight etc with in the group.

Again everything needs to be as much "a like" as possible. The brass should be clean. The primer holes the same diamiter. The brass should all be the same length and be equally deburred and uniformaly concentric. Perfectly equal neck tension is a big help in eqaulizing preseasure and volicity. Are you full length resizing? Do them all. Are you just bumping it back and doing the neck? Again, what ever method, do it the same way each time. Don't mix and match the ammo preperation method in your batch.

Primers should be set the same in every round. If you set them flush, all of them should be flush, if you set them to maximum depth, then they all need to be maxium depth. Check each round as you do it. Powder, every charge should be weighed, no exceptions.

Bullet seatting. Here is a tricky and sometimes over looked accuracy killer. The OAL of the cartrige that your reloading manual lists as the proper length, is just the industry standard. IT IS NOT the best lenght for accuracy in most guns. Simply put, the standard OAL is a size that ALL guns, chambered in that cartridge will accept and fire. So what is the best OAL? That depends. If you are shooting a mag fed semi-auto, you obviously can't make the round to long since it has to fit the magizine. In a bolt gun you have more freedom with the length.

Most guns shoot better if the bullet touches the rifleing when the round is chambered. There are several reasons for this: 1. the bullet is more likely to be pointed and started straight down the barrel 2. the presure will be more uniform in the chamber when the round is touched off, this helps equalize velocity. You need a gauge to determine the optimal depth. A word of caution though. Sometimes you can't have the bullets touching the lands for other reasons. Match grade bulletts that are only going to be used on the bench or shooting range can be set into the lands. Hunting or other field ammo still should be backed off, at least a few thousands. The reason is that if the bullet is set into the lands, and you then attempt to eject the round without fireing it, you can leave the bullet stuck in the barrel and eject the brass and dump all the powder out. To avoid this problem get the bullet as close to the lands as possible and then bump it back a tad farther. Then do them all the same. Keep in mind that each bullet manufacture has differrences in the ojive (curvature) of their bullets and you will need to refigure the OAL every time you try a different bullet.

Accurate reloading requires high quality componets, consistent technique and proceedures in order to produce uniform ammo capable of going to the same point of impact every time you pull the trigger.



It is here.

The details:

Action: Remington 700.
Reason: I didn’t want to save up long enough to buy a BAT if I had I would have gotten a left load right eject with a left side bolt.
Barrel: McGowen, it’s a hefty 1in thick contour from breach to muzzle.
Reason: Highly recommended company with very high quality standards. Plus they agreed to purchase a custom button and give me a slightly faster twist rate AND they didn’t charge me for it. They are cheaper than Hart or Krieger. I have a McGowen barrel on another gun and it is excellent.
Stock: Bell and Carlson Remington Tactical in Natural Break Up Camo.
Reason: The B&C stock will accept a bi-pod as well as fit a standard bench rest front bag. The bi pod placement can be adjusted to almost anyplace on the forearm you want it. The Tactical stock is adjustable for check piece and length of pull. By removing the rear swivel stud it will fit most standard rear bench rest bags. I picked the camo pattern because it looked better than the basic black.
Trigger: Jewell, and yes it is good and crisp.
Scope (not shown): Leupold Mark 4 with an ART Recital. The base will be a 20 or 30 MOA pic rail with Burris Signature Z rings and another 20 MOA in the rings. I’m doing it because I own one. Yes, it was fun writing that last sentence.
Bi-pod: Harris, is there another choice?
Rest: I want a SEB so bad I can taste it. I won’t buy anything less, so it might take a while to get this. If you ever use one you won’t want anything else either. Besides SEB and his wife are good folks.
Caliber: 7mm-08 Remington.
Reason: What you’ve never heard of it? It is a .308 win case necked down to 7mm. Yes there is lots of commercial brass and loads for it. No I’m not actually going to shoot factory ammo, are you nuts? This little gun can do everything a 308 can do except with better ballistics. Transonic is about 1,200 yards which makes it a perfect 1,000 yard gun. Even in a lightweight sportier gun it only has 11lbs of recoil, in my much heavier configuration it will have almost none with no muzzle break. The barrel will last forever compared to a 6.5-284 and it should prove easy to feed with a variety of powders available (more important now with the shortages). I suspect that the Berger 168’s or the 162 Amax will prove most effective on dogs and yotes at 1,000 and deer and goats to 700 or 800. Moose will be limited to 400 and elk probably 600. When/if I get that elusive moose and big horn tags I’ll probably just use my 06 anyway.
Gunsmith: He shall remain nameless, unless I have something I dislike about the gun. If he waited just 3 more weeks he could have missed his delivery date by an entire year. Which is bad enough. He didn't do all the work I ordered, and the project is way over cost due to the fact that he didn't get me 2007 prices on components because he couldn't be bothered to return my phone calls or emails back in 2007. I have used this guy before and the quality of his work is good but the way he runs his business is shabby.